From the Director: Welcome to the Spring Semester

As December heat and humidity give way to January heat and humidity, you know spring is around the corner in South Florida. And spring in South Florida means two things–film festivals (including ones for student filmmakers) and Oscars.

We’re already in the middle of the Miami Jewish Film Festival, which you’ll read more about here. I especially encourage FIU students to get out and take advantage of the festival’s diverse programming, as well as its FREE Next Wave memberships tailored to students.

March will see the Miami Film Festival. (March 6 – 15). In addition to the usual eclectic lineup of national and international features, keep an eye out for the Cineslam student filmmaker showcase, where our own Lucia Plaza’s short Sal & Vinny will premier. There are plenty of opportunities still available for volunteering at MFF, as well as chances in next year’s cycle for you to win funding to shoot your short through CinemaSlam, just as Lucia did.

This April will also see the third annual Panther Film Festival, sponsored by the Film Initiative with the support of the Film Studies program. All student filmmakers are welcome to submit or participate. We’ll be holding workshops, 48 hour filmmaking challenges, and similar events for student filmmakers throughout the semester, so keep your eye out for that.

Also keep your eye out for our Oscar watch party, which has now become an annual tradition. The last couple of years we’ve held it in GC 140, and plan to bring that to you again. We’ll have food, games, a red carpet, the works!

There’s plenty more on tap–great classes! new podcast episodes! screenings! filmmaking! We’ll keep you up to date here and on our Instagram, so follow us @FIUFilmStudies, and have a great semester.

Dr. Andrew Strycharski directs the film studies program at Florida International University